A Sydney immigration lawyer has offered his services to help keep an elderly, bed-ridden UK Gran in the care of her family in Tasmania.
Ray Turner, from Turner Coulson Australian Immigration Lawyers, said he contacted Gladys Jefferson’s family and offered to work on a pro-bono basis after reading about the 96-year-old’s plight.
While Australian Immigration Minister Chris Bowen denied that there were plans to deport the ailing grandmother, the only way she can secure a permanent visa is to take her case to the Immigration Appeals Tribunal.
Mr Turner said the process was lengthy, complicated and costly.
It costs about $700 to lodge an appeal.
“As an Australian, I am appalled by the department’s initial decision to reject Mrs Jefferson’s application to come to Tasmania on a contributory parent visa,” Mr Turner said yesterday.
Mrs Jefferson, who came to Tasmania on a tourist visa, now has a bridging visa and is legally able to stay in Australia while her appeal case is decided.
Mr Turner said that process could take 12 to 18 months.
In the meantime, the Department of Immigration is considering an alternative long-stay medical treatment visa which would give Mrs Jefferson a further 12 months.
“If the case does not go to the tribunal then the family has to go through all this anguish again in 12 months time. That is simply unacceptable,” Mr Turner said.
Mrs Jefferson is being cared for by her daughter and son-in-law at their White Hills home.
On Thursday, Mr Bowen said reporting of Mrs Jefferson’s struggle to stay in the care of her only living relatives had been “inaccurate” and “misinformed”.
Mr Bowen said there were no plans to deport the elderly woman and she was legally allowed to stay in Australia. Source: The Mercury.
In another Aussie immigration story a British man who was hoping to live permanently in Australia now faces deportation just because his railcard didn’t work.
Engineer Mark Littler, who lives in Brisbane, was fined £126 after his travelcard failed to record a train fare of less than £2.
He told a member of staff that his ticket wasn’t working as soon as he boarded the train at an unstaffed station, only to be told that he would have to pay a hefty penalty.
“She advised me that she would have to give me a warning,” says Mr Littler. “I was however in disagreement as my go card would not tag on. Therefore I was not evading the fare, I was acting in good faith.”
Mr Litter appealed against the fine, but a Magistrate upheld the decision and recorded a conviction for fare evasion.
This means that Mr Littler could be sent back to the UK if the Immigration Department reacts to the conviction.
Mr Littler now plans to take legal action against Australia’s Transport and Main Roads company in the hope of having the decision reversed. Source: AOL Travel.
In the UK migrants can also be denied visa extensions or Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) or permanent residence due to minor convictions related to rail travel or civil actions for debts.
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